SIPTU members in the security industry have expressed outrage at a decision to defer the implementation of pay increases contained in a new Employment Regulation Order (ERO) for the sector until 1st September, 2021. SIPTU Organiser, Brendan Carr, said: “Workers in the security industry have already been waiting months for pay increases and other improvements to their conditions which are contained in this ERO. It is deeply troubling that the Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail, Damien English, has deferred the implementation of these improvements for three months from the agreed date of 1st June until 1st September 2021. This is slap in the face for workers in the industry, many of whom have been on the frontline throughout the pandemic.” Negotiations to secure a new ERO, which sets minimum pay rates and conditions for workers, began at the Joint Labour Committee (JLC) for the contract security industry in April 2020. Following nine months of negotiations, proposals for an ERO were forwarded to the Labour Court earlier this year. At a public hearing in January, the Labour Court heard submissions from workers’ representatives and employers in the industry. In making its recommendation, the Court stated that it had taken into consideration concerns raised by employers regarding the impact of Brexit and the global pandemic as well as the disquiet of workers over the deferral of a wage increase for more than eight months. As a result, a compromise date of 1st June 2021 was recommended for the new ERO to come into effect. SIPTU Sector Organiser, Ed Kenny, said: “It is extraordinary that the Minister has ignored both the recommendations of the Labour Court and the JLC concerning the commencement date for this ERO. The Minister has stated that part of the rationale behind the deferral was ‘to ensure that workers and employers have adequate notice of the changes’. This is not a viable reason as workers and employers within the industry have long been aware of the changes and of the scheduled implementation date for this ERO of 1st June.” He added: “While the increases in pay and the unsociable shift rate contained in the ERO are welcome, it is very regrettable that there is now a further delay on their implementation.”